Hi Zimmerman Family
I am the great granddaughter of George Washington Zimmerman (b. 1855) the fourth child of George Rufus and Mahala. For my two cents worth (if anyone is still following this nine years after the last post), I’ll relate what my mother Ramona Jerlean Pettis Ireland told me about the death of George Rufus. She recounted it to me as told her by her mother Clora June Zimmerman Pettis (b. 1885) on several occasions.
Clora said that the Zimmerman family had a spring on their property which made the homestead desirable to local townspeople. A few of them arrived masked one day pretending to be like “Cobb Soldiers” who said they were after crops for their troops. My mother did not know which side of the Civil War they were theoretically on, but Rufus said “I know what you are here for [meaning their homestead] so you might as well shoot me here so at least the family will know where to find me”. And they shot him there in front of his wife and children. There were at that time nine children the youngest of whom were six month old twins. She never stated how many of the family were present when their father as killed.
As it happened one of the assassins was so sweaty that his bandana fell down from his face and he was clearly recognizable. I have no idea why lawmen wouldn’t have acted on this killing but instead of vacating the property Mahala and the family stayed on. Being a good Christian, Mahala would actually thereafter greet the recognized killer in the town when she saw him.